Best Eye Care/Eye Wear Store
Step into this locally owned and operated optical store and you’ll be greeted by Sunny, a friendly goldendoodle who accompanies the store’s Owner Heinz Ebner to work each day. Having a shop dog adds to the friendly vibe at Aspen Eyewear, where professionals have been helping improve vision for those in Boulder since opening in 1985. Staff opticians are Board Certified by the American Board of Opticianry and employees are trained to understand your prescription and find the best glasses for your needs. “I feel fortunate that we have such great employees,” Ebner says. In fact, some have been working for Aspen Eyewear for the past two decades. “Customers come in and see the same friendly faces,” he says. “I think we’re successful because we really care about our customers. Our philosophy in the store: Do the best we can to fulfill our customers’ needs.” 2525 Arapahoe Ave., #E23, Boulder, 303.447.0210, aspeneyewear.com.
Runner Up: Eye Care Center of Northern Colorado, 300 Exempla Circle, #120, Lafayette, 303.772.3300; 1400 Dry Creek Drive, Longmont, 303.772-3300, eyecaresite.com.
Ready for some Boulder history? Munson Farms was established in 1976, which was before the Pearl Street Mall opened. “We are the oldest working family vegetable farm in Boulder County,” says Mike Munson. Over the years, the farm has expanded from just a couple of acres to more than 100 acres, growing vegetables, tomatoes, peaches and pumpkins. But a beloved specialty? The fresh sweet corn that’s hand-picked every morning. Customers often ask: “What do you add to your water that makes your corn so sweet?!” Munson says. In the summer, you can pick sunflowers at the farm. Come fall, Munson Farms has pumpkin patches and hayrides. With the approach of the holiday season, the farm sells Christmas trees and wreaths. 7355 Valmont Road, Boulder, 720.971.8847, munsonfarms.com.
Runner Up: Aspen Moon Farm, 7927 Hygiene Road, Longmont, 303.684.6848, aspenmoonfarm.com.
Best Pet Store AND Best Pet Bakery/Deli AND Best Locally Owned Store
P.C.’s Pantry For Dogs And Cats
Mary Lee Withers, owner of P.C.’s Pantry for Dogs and Cats, says that her store is defined by the excellent team providing service for every customer who enters. From knowing your name to what type of pet food you like to buy for Fido, employees at P.C.’s work hard to make your shopping experience pleasant. “Our employees strive to provide the best service possible to our customers,” says Withers. “When our employees are recognized for their efforts they are pleased they are able to assist our customers in caring for their animals.” P.C.’s Pantry is always adding new, high-quality pet products to their inventory, such as a locally-made leash built from used climbing rope. Stop by today to see what toys or baked goodies they have in store for your furry friend. 2828 30th St., Boulder, 303.245.9909, pcspantry.com.
Runner Up for Best Pet Store: Whole Pets, 2835 Pearl St., #B, Boulder, 303.444.4733; 2540 Baseline Road, Boulder, 303.494.1330, wholepetsholistic.com.
Runner Up for Best Pet Bakery/Deli: Button Rock Bakery, 1377 Forest Park Circle, #102, Lafayette, 303.926.1676, buttonrockbakery.com.
Runner Up for Best Locally Owned Store: Barbara & Company, 1505 Pearl St., Boulder, 303.444.2565, barbaraandcompany.net.
Best Recreational Marijuana Store AND Best Customer Service
Customer service is especially important when it comes to recreational marijuana, a fairly new industry. “We work so hard to provide the highest level of service and products at an affordable price,” says Owner Dylan Donaldson. “We want all our customers to have a wonderful experience working with us.” Karing Kind prides itself on carrying safe and clean products that can be trusted and educating consumers on how to best meet their needs. “We are always listening to customer feedback and engaging our customers to make sure we are still focusing on the important things to them,” says Donaldson. The diverse inventory at Karing Kind is always growing and changing. Stop by and mention the Boulder County Gold awards for a free joint with any purchase over $25. 5854 Rawhide Court, Boulder, 303.449.9333, karingkind.com.
Runner Up for Best Recreational Marijuana Store: The Farm, 2801 Iris Ave., Boulder, 303.440.1323, thefarmco.com.
Runner Up for Best Customer Service: Walters & Hogsett Jewelers, 2425 Canyon Blvd., Boulder, 303.449.2626, waltersandhogsett.com.
Best Recycled Goods/Thrift Store
TRU Hospice Thrift Shop
When you shop at TRU Hospice Thrift Shop, you help to ensure quality services for those living with advanced illness and loss through TRU Hospice, TRU PACE, TRU Palliative Care and TRU Grief Support Services. As a local nonprofit, 100 percent of the proceeds from sales go directly to the programs of TRU Community Care, Boulder’s oldest and only nonprofit hospice provider. “We are all striving together to make Boulder County the best place to live,” says TRU Thrift Shop Manager Lynn McCullough. TRU Thrift Shop has a huge selection of items for the fall and Halloween season, with sales beginning on October 11. The store also features a cafe with coffee and snacks, as well as a shaded patio. 5565 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder, 303.604.5353, trucare.org.
Runner Up: The Amazing Garage Sale, 4919 Broadway, Boulder, 303.447.0417, theamazinggaragesale.com.